Geotechnical Engineer

Job Description

Do you have a talent for both engineering and science? If so, a career as a Geotechnical Engineer may be an excellent fit for you.

Geotechnical Engineers are critical to the success of construction projects. They use their math and science know-how to study the geology of a select area, analyze data, and conduct research to help make recommendations and plans for structures proposed for that land. Geotechnical Engineers consider the soil, rock, and water tables of an area — determining factors such as stability, future erosion, settlement — all in the service of recommending the best and safest ways to construct everything from houses to high-rises to highway interchanges.  

Typical Duties and Responsibilities

  • Provide expert engineering advice and recommendations for construction projects
  • Perform geotechnical studies, field tests, analysis, and design
  • Prepare and present findings and recommendations to leadership
  • Organize and direct geotechnical site assessment
  • Determine and obtain necessary compliance permits

Education and Background

This position requires a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering or another related engineering field. Employers often prefer candidates with Professional Engineering (PE) licensure.

Skills and Proficiencies

  • Possess up-to-date knowledge of federal, state, and local environmental regulations
  • Expertise in CAD (computer-aided design) software
  • Microsoft Office Suite proficient
  • Strong critical-thinking and problem-solving skills
  • Excellent time-management skills with the ability to effectively prioritize tasks
  • Comfortable working in the field
  • Strong teamwork skills

Compensation

According to Payscale the median annual salary of a Geotechnical Engineer with

1 Year of Experience:

  • Orlando, Florida: $51,000
  • Tampa, Florida: $52,000
  • Jacksonville, Florida: $55,000
  • Miami, Florida: $60,000
  • Atlanta, Georgia: $64,000
  • Chicago, Illinois: $68,000
  • Houston, Texas: $61,000
  • Los Angeles, California: $65,000
  • New York City, New York: $72,000
  • Seattle, Washington: $72,000
  • Overall: $61,000

5 Years of Experience:

  • Orlando, Florida: $79,000
  • Tampa, Florida: $74,000
  • Jacksonville, Florida: $74,000
  • Miami, Florida: $72,000
  • Atlanta, Georgia: $81,000
  • Chicago, Illinois: $84,000
  • Houston, Texas: $81,000
  • Los Angeles, California: $89,000
  • New York City, New York: $92,000
  • Seattle, Washington: $82,000
  • Overall: $85,000

Similar Job Titles

Career Path

The path to becoming a Geotechnical Engineer typically starts with earning a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering or another related engineering field. Beyond that, obtaining  Professional Engineering (PE) licensure can show you’ve met standards in education, exam performance, and experience. 

Position Trends

As infrastructure in the U.S. continues to age, Geotechnical Engineers will be tapped to provide analysis and recommendations on how to safely maintain, repair, or replace unsafe and out-of-date structures. 

Job Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for Civil Engineers (which typically includes Geotechnical Engineers) should experience six percent job growth through 2028, about as fast as average growth across all occupations.  

Typical Hours

The typical work hours for a Geotechnical Engineer are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, typically in an office setting or in the field.  

Where You Can Find Jobs

  • 4 Corner Resources
  • Career Builder
  • Glassdoor
  • Indeed
  • LinkedIn
  • Monster 
  • Zip Recruiter

Are You Interested in Becoming a Geotechnical Engineer?

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